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March 21/22 From the Pastor's Desk...

My Dear Parishioners:

The second collection this weekend is one that will be taken up at every parish in the United States and it is for the WORLD‘S POOR. As Catholics we have a mission to follow the Gospel imperative and reach out to help those who are less fortunate then ourselves. While this collection comes during difficult economic times for us here in the United States, we also realize that there are those who are in dire need. The collection can go to three specific agencies – "Peter's Pence" which is the Holy Father‘s outreach, "Catholic Relief" which is the American Bishop‘s outreach, or to the "Catholic Campaign for Human Development." On the envelopes in the pews you may indicate which agency you wish your contribution to go to. We thank you in advance for your generosity to the World‘s Poor.

Recently we have been getting a number of requests from parishioners who are homebound, asking if someone would bring them Holy Communion after Mass on the weekend. As pastor, I am able to commission parishioners as Eucharistic ministers to the sick and homebound. If you are willing to do this ministry, kindly call the parish office and I will meet with you, train you, and give you the materials needed to perform this ministry. From the earliest days of our Church it has been the practice that members of the faithful would bring the Eucharist to those who were unable to join the community for Mass because of illness. So this ministry has a long history – as a matter of fact the Eucharist was first "reserved" so that it would be available to the sick and homebound. The ministry only takes a little bit of time and yet would bring a great deal of comfort to those in need.

Next Saturday our 8th grade students are holding their annual "fund/fun raiser" -- a Spaghetti Dinner! This will help them raise the necessary funds so they can take a class trip together before they graduate Holy Cross School. Actually a lot of parishioners are making the various sauces and baking desserts for them. I will be making a large pot of my "Special Spaghetti Sauce with meat balls and Italian Sausage." Why not plan a nice Saturday night dinner for the whole family, and at the same time, help and support our wonderful 8th grade students raise the necessary funds for their special Spring trip.

This Thursday through the following Wednesday our grade school will be hosting a number of grade school students from Japan. It promises to be a very interesting and exciting opportunity for Holy Cross School and its students, parents and teachers. Look for some coverage in the local news paper and TV. This is just one more example of how our school and its staff are on the cutting edge of Catholic Education and are worthy of our continued support.

The weather this past week has given us all a brief view of what we can expect with the coming of Easter and Spring. After the long, cold and snow-filled winter, we can look forward to the warm sun, the green color of the grass and the Spring flowers – but most of all we can look forward to the wonderful feast of Easter and the New Life it offers each and every one of us.

On Wednesday, March 18, 37 children in our parish family received God‘s forgiveness for the first time in the sacrament of Reconciliation. Last Saturday our children enjoyed an afternoon retreat experience, and then this past Wednesday they were joined by their families and the rest of our Holy Cross Parish Family during our Lenten Penance Service. We thank you parents for the wonderful model that you are of the unconditional love and forgiveness of God to your children.

“Oremus pro invicem”
Fr Tom

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